ATV AnswerMania

Jan. 26, 2009 By Ricky Sosebee

Frequently Asked Honda Pilot Questions
From: tom
Comment: please can anyone tell me how easy/hard it would be to put a honda fireblade engine into my pilot, or advise of an extremely fast engine suitable of an easy swap over, thinking i will obviously i will still need a reverse gear,and ideally sticking with the automatic clutch or would a quick shift be needed for these types of quick engines??? needs to be quick but a simplish job as i may need to pay labour to local garage to do work..... any advise greatly appreciated...

I’m not sure what kind of swaps will fit into the pilot my friend. The pilot has been long gone and most are trial and error configurations that will require serious mods to get other engines to fit. Get me the year and I will look around for you.


Carburetor "know-how" Series: "The Fundamentals"
From: Pete
Bay City , MI
Comment: My grandkids have a 110cc ATV it starts it runs but the fuel continusly flows through the carb. even when machine is not running until tank is empty. If flows out the overflow tube on bottom of carb.

The floats are stuck my friend. Check the carb bowl and make sure your not adding more crud by using a dirty fuel can.


2008 GNCC Racing Underway
From: kelso
Anchorage , AK
Comment: why dont they have gncc racing in alaska cause i like rididng the trails more then the track please email me back if anyone knows.

Looks like you need to start a series up there! GNCC is owned and operated by Racer Productions in West Virginia. The reason I wouldn’t go that far is because its just too far from Georgia. Same as most people, I suppose.


Honda's FourTrax Rancher AT GPScape is the world's first ATV to offer a built-in Global Positioning System
From: John McCray
Ketchikan , AK
Comment: I live in the widerness of Alaska and my Ranger 400 is a real work horse and I cannot do without it but I have no citys within 500 miles to take it to for up keep. Is there a manual for me to look at that will help me with fixing my ATV if it breaks down. I have had it over a year now and hawls of 400 pounds a trip of two miles in the tal timber on its six hours a day in my tonewood job is normal. I need to repair it myself if it breaks down. Where can I get a fix it yourself manual?

Sounds peaceful up there in Alaska. The manuals you refer to can be purchased online. Go to


Polaris Predator 90 Review
From: annmarie
Davison , MI
Comment: I have tried a number of web sites trying to find out the speed of the polaris outlaw 90 and the sportsman 90 and I am still searching. If you have this information, could you please email me? thank you

Top speed is something that is very rarely published on any ATV much less a Youth ATV. Top speed to me is the speed in which I can safely handle my ATV and in reference to the youth or kids in my life it’s a speed in which my child can learn to control the atv with out getting hurt. Porbably should place more emphasis on safety rather than speed.


Total Control Suspension (TCS) - ATV Suspension - Long Travel shocks for Project QuadSport Z400 ATV
From: Grant
Eugene , OR
Comment: Hi, I am from the raptor forum and have a rear shock that is way too soft. Please contact me by e mail so I can get this shock re worked, i also have a second quad that needs work on it too. thanks. Grant

Well we do not work on ATV’s here at Answerman central but there are company’s who are working on them. Contact Laz Sommers over at GT and let him service your suspension.


ATV Answer Man is Back

From: brokencat
midland VA,

Comment: I have a 2003 500cc arctic cat. It has 530 miles on it. The other day at the parts store the guy behind the counter talked me into getting some "seafoam". This is suppose to help things run better!! I was reluctant to put it in my truck so I figured I would try it on my articat. The arctic cat won't do anything now. I have taken the carburator off and cleaned it throughly. I have taken the spark plug out and verified the spark is there. I have cleaned out the gas tank by draining it. I have sprayed starter fluid in the intake while cranking on it. I have checked the wires to be sure the kill switch isn't keeping it from firing. I am out of ideas. I don't believe I have missed something but there is always that chance. Does anyone have any suggestions?? I keep the arctic cat in the garage year round. I had used it about two weeks prior while cutting down some trees. Any help would be much appreciated.

Well it only takes three things to make an engine run and that’s fuel, fire and air. I have personally never had any experience with “SeaFoam”. If you could give me more specifics on what TYPE of Sea Foam you used it will help me with your question. This company makes so many different products and I’m assuming you added this to the fuel. Or was this the Motor treatment that is added to the oil? I just need a bit more info.


04 artic cat 500
Ashton , ID

Comment: i have 04 artic cat 500. i need to know how to change the rear inside cv boot.

Removing your rear CV joints can be a labor intensive job but in most cases its not very difficult at all. As I have always stated here in my column, you will need a service manual that can be purchased at the local dealer. But I will try to get you started.

Remove the wheel that’s driven by the axle on the side that needs the boot. The hub and bearing knuckles will come off next. There are two bolts holding this knuckle on. Then the axle shaft is exposed. The axle should pop out with a few good hard tugs in the direction of the wheel hub and then its on to the boot. Get a quality boot and boot band/banding tool kit from your dealer. The kit should have directions on how to replace the boot. Then reinstall everything in reverse order. Got It? Be careful and make sure you have a clean shop floor with plenty of light. Also secure the Arctic Cat on a good jack so it doesn’t fall on you.

Let us know how it goes.


From: Chris
San Antonio , TX
Comment: Where do you find the model number and serial number for a Polaris Trailboss 250. I think the year is 87 or 88 but not sure.

These numbers should be just above the pull start and the first two numbers will give you your year. Good Luck


From: Kayla
Terra Alta, WV
Comment: Where is the fuse box located on a 2005 sportsman 400?

There is no actual fuse panel on the Sportsman atv’s. Polaris uses inline fuses on their wiring. Hope that helps. Thanks


From: Joe Velasquez
Katy , TX
Comment: Ive got a 2003 Trailblazer 250 by POLARIS and my problem is removing the starter. There is a gear in the way and I dont know where to get the pully or whatever it takes to remove the thing thats blocking the starter.Ive tried several bike web sites but havent been able to locate a maintenance or parts book for this particular 4 wheeler.Can you help me get to the starter? What tools do I need and where can I get them. Thanks Joe

Getting the starter off of your atv is a bit complicated. First question would be, why do you think you will need a starter? And then I would have to ask if you have a service manual for your atv? The reason for question number one is that these starters are very rarely in need of replacement unless they have been shorted out or the drive gears are broken/stripped. I asked about the service manual because it lays out step by step what needs to happen to remove the starter. Most Polaris dealers can get you both the service manual and special tools you may need to repair the atv with.

Get that service manual!


From: Ken
Keller , TX
Comment: I have a 2002 700cc Polaris sportsman atv...and have a problem with the crankshift bearings(dianosed at polaris shop) place of the 700cc engine I have a chance to get a 600cc at a fraction of the cost from a friend...WILL this 600cc set-up ok?

Wow, I’m overwhelmed by the amount of Polaris questions. Ok, I think your asking about the value of the 600 sportsman verses the cost of fixing the 700? And I do believe you mean Crankshaft bearings not Crankshift bearings right? The value of anything is in the eye of the beholder. If you do not want to spend time and trouble, not to mention money on the 700 then yes the 600 may be an option. Good Luck


From: james
Ocala , FL |
Comment: How do you set the timing on a 90cc yamaha atv 4cycle.

These type questions can be tricky because each manufacturer has different settings and timing marks for their equipment. I suggest you purchase a service manual to get the correct markings and this will make your job today and in the future a lot easier because a service manual is a gift that keeps on giving.


From: bportzel
Los Angeles , CA
Comment: My son has a 2002 Polaris Scrambler 50 that cuts out at half throttle, any ideas? My son is 11 and would like more power. He enjoys a friends Yamaha 80, should i modify the 50 for more power or spend my money on a newer larger quad? If you suggest i modify it what do you suggest? I have heard out a "green wire" that needs to be cut?

I never like cutting wires or anything close to get mods out of a youth ATV. Look at your Boy and think to yourself, Is he ready for more power? Could he control a bigger machine? If he has what it takes to control a larger atv then make the move. Chances are you’ll get more out of the 50 if its not all hacked up and that can help pay for the 80.


From: Patrick Rigden
Subject: 2004 polaris atp 500
Hi, found you on the net. maybe you can help. i have a 2004 polaris atp 500 and it ran perfect untill last weekend. it started fast one day it ran mint the hext it will not run without the choke pulled out about ¼ inch. When you push it in even when hot the motor dies instintly. I changed the spark plug for starters but that did nothing. do I have a plugged idle jet or is their more to it then that. With the choke pulled out it runs like it always did.
thanks for your time.   

Sounds to me like its not getting enough fuel. Drain the Carb and look for any debris in the float bowl. Also be careful what you put your gas in and always make sure there isn’t trash in the can before you fill it up.


From: michael
La paz
Comment: hi i just got a new honda 99' 2000 fourtrax 400 ex, i'm kind new in this quad world, just wanna now if this model is good what are the diferences to the other brands of the same specifications...and some tips to begin the custom work...thanks for the help. by the way ur site rocks.. chao

My first thought of the 400ex is bullet proof. These quads rocked out in their time and are still a great ride even today. The first thing I change on any new atv is suspension. Get the ride comfortable in the harsh stuff with some suspension upgrades and you’ll be rockin out the trails leaving your buddies behind


From: Leroy416
Mt Angel, OR
Comment: I have an '04 Sportsman 500. Whenever I work it hard (deep snow or towing) it acts like the clutch won't release. The engine lugs down at idle and the trans won't shift until the engine is shut off and the drivetrain unloaded. A new belt helped for a short time. I pulled the clutch cover and got it to act up. It looks like the clutch releases fine but the belt jumps over a groove on the one-way clutch and drags on the inboard drive sheave. Is this a clutch alignment problem. The engine and trans don't seem to be moving under load.

I would say you have an alignment problem with the CVT. Dig into the service manual for proper alignment specs and also be sure that all of the sheaves are moving properly. There are bushings as well as bearings in both the drive and driven clutches so be sure those aren’t locked or worn out.


From: joseph
Syracuse , KS
Comment: Hey everyone, Im trying to figure out this 00sportsman 500. The main problem is that it seems to be slipping the new belt intermittently. Most of the time even when i pwr brake it it hooks up good. But once in a while it totally feels like its slipping. This has engine braking, so acc. to chilton there is not a shim adjustment. Please correct me if im wrong though. I also noticed that the engine braking is much more intense than most sportsmans, it could literally throw u over the handle bars. Thanks for any help

Replace your drive belt. Get a dual cog style belt that will give your Sportsman the traction it needs. As for the Engine braking I would make sure the drive clutch isn’t sticking. The shift weights can become tight in the shoulder where they are mounted and create a sticking action that would make the engine braking feel more than it should. And quit power braking that poor ATV before you have to write to me about a worn out/blown engine.


From: Wayne St.Pierre Jr
Subject: 1999 250 honda recon
I own a 1999 250 honda recon and I am trying to replace the bearings on the axel shaft. I am wondering if I can do this without removing the swing arm assembly?  It looks like I will have to remove the swing arm to be able to disconnect the drive shaft from the differential. And then once that is done I can start to disassemble the differential and remove the shaft and bearings. Thanks,

I believe you answered your own question my friend. Proceed with caution.


Comment: Recently purchased 2006 yamaha kodiak from florida. Have noticed lack of power when operating at 6000ft elevation, what should i do.

You’ll need some jetting changes to make this ATV perform at higher altitudes. You might want to remove the air box lid just as an experiment to see if that helps at that elevation.


From: doug
Dardanelle , AR
Comment: I have a 87 300 kawaski bayou and i have a new battery and something keeps drawing it down to where i have to keep charging it. it goes down over night. What do you think is wrong with it.

Well the first thing I see is that Kawasaki didn’t make a 300 Bayou in 1987. The first one was built in 1988. I would suggest to look at the ignition switch to make sure it is in the off position all the way. Also if you have bulbs in the headlight or tail light make sure they are not broken and possibly shorting. Then I would make sure the generator system is working properly on your atv. The battery may start the unit then the operation of it will kill whats left.


From: terry
Edgewood , MD
Comment: I would like to know if I can get more power to my 50 suzuki atv. It cut's out at full troddle

Excuse me for laughing but what is a troddle? If that’s the throttle you are asking about then try getting a new spark plug and some high-test gas. That will most likely help the troddle issue as well.. ;)


From: Chris
Fayetteville , NC
Comment: I have a honda rubicon. i put a snorkel kit and a jet kit on it. Now i cant get the mixture right. It will only run for a few minutes before it shuts off. There is fuel leaking out of the check valve on the bottom of the carb as well.

Sounds like you have a float stuck or possible the needle is hung up which is not allowing the fuel to shut off. Go back into the carb dude..


From: Rancher/Dan
Brighton , CO
Comment: I recently purchased a Honda 2008 Rancher TRX 420 FE. Also Purchased a Komodo 2500 Lbs. Winch. Problem is there are not very good installation instructions and the general mounting plate most likely will not fit. What are your suggestions?

Find a company that sells a winch mount for your atv. These are most of the time identical in where the winch mounts. Most winches use similar type bolt patterns and chances are the winch you have will fit.


From: christopher
Subject: rincon
Are there aftermarket products available to cool honda rincon trx680fa? if so let me know,

There are products to help in cooling atv’s. Most are fluid that will replace typical coolants. Companys like Redline and Liquid performance have great products.


From: Joe
Cincinnati , OH
Comment: I have a 2001 polaris sportsman 400 4x4 and believe the electric starter went out, where is it located on the atv so that I can work on it? I do not have a manual for it as I bought it used.

Get that manual brother! The starter is located just behind the cylinder above the drive clutch assembly.


From: gracie
Ruth , NC
Comment: 2002 200 yamaha blaster clutch trouble shooting?

A slipping clutch can give up many signs before you realize the entire clutch is shot. The slipping of the clutch or loss of power in higher gears, rough and difficult shifting right off the bottom is a clear indicator of clutch trouble. Changing the oil for the clutch can give up signs of excessive wear also.


From: tommy metcalf
Milan , IN
Comment: How do i set the timming on a mini atv on a 4stroke engine?

Youll need a service manual to set the timing on any machine. The manufacturers specs are all different and thus the need for your service manual. It helps to know what ATV your working on as well.


From: Travis
Kingsport , TN
Comment: I have a 1997 suzuki Lt-f 4wd, the right front wheel was locked up so I pulled the wheel, then pulled the drumm with a little help from a hammer, I didnt know you could release brakes from back panel till I read manual. After getting drum off I released brakes, put the drum back on, put wheel on ,slightly tightned lug nuts and the wheel was extremely hard to turn. When I took drum off the first time the dust seal came off, and again I used the hammer to help the seal back on the drum, could the seal be causing the problem of the wheel not turning.

Sounds like one of two things are happening here. The brakes are not releasing due to dryed out cabling, which can be cured with a bit of oil, or the adjustment on the drum is way out. How bad were the brakes? Was there any signs of wear on the inside of the drum? Is there any blueing of particular areas inside the drum? The seal would not cause an extreme hang-up like you described.


From: wade
Winfield , AL
Comment: i have a 06 honda rancher. just rebuilt it but it is still smoking. everything is new in the motor. i have been told that there is an o-ring between the head and the jug. i dont remeber replacing it. could you tell me where it is and if this is something that can be done without taking it to the shop.

The only O-rings I see in the head of the Rancher are the seals for valve adjustment covers and intake to head seals. Its my experience that most newly built motors will indeed smoke a biut as the rings begin to seat themselves. Don’t give up just yet. Let the engine break in another hour or two before you call in reinforcements. Just don’t be hard on it while its getting settled.


From: sarge
Randolph , ME
Comment: Could you tell me the propper wiring to a butterfly fender mount winch switch?I had to remove it and I'm not sure I hooked them back correctly.I thought the switch was bad but now I believe it to be the selenoid,fron the battery-I have the positive going to the selenoid and the negative going to the switch.

You need to give me some more info my friend. I have to know what im working on.


From: hydrostream1986
Comment: I have a 1992, Honda, 300 Fourtrax, 2wd, Utility ATV. It has been running great for years. The starter went out about 5 years ago, since then we have been using the kick starter. The other day my cousins were riding it and they said it seemed to have gotten stuck between gears. The engine was still running but it would not move. They turned it off and pulled it home. I went to kick over the kick starter and the piston is not moving, but when it is in gear the kick starter will propel the machine forward or backward, but of course it is not turning over the engine. Since it was running when they had this problem, what do you think is disconnecting the kick starter from the engine. I bought a maintenance manual, and it says the machine has 2 clutches a centrifugal clutch on the right side that disengages at idle speed and engages when cranking speed increases. On the left side a multiple disc clutch is attached to the tranny mainshaft and is actuated by the gear shift mechanism. Any info you have would be much appreciated, Thanks

Sounds like a trip to the dealership is required here as the clutching of this machine is very complicated. The sudden stall between gears could be due to the weighted internals of the low idle clutch which have come apart. Take it in and get it serviced my friend.


From: steven
Albany , NY
Comment: i have a warrior 350 and was wondering how to put the gears in because the manual i have doesnt show me that well,

I need to know what gears your replacing my friend. Also a year of the quad would help.


From: Fritz
Comment: how do I determine the top ring from the second ring in a new piston set if there are no marking,each ring has a r stamped on it, the brand name is riken.

Most likely the two top rings are going to be the same and will fit in either ring groove. Every manufacturer is different. Retrace your steps my friend and ask the company you bought the rings from if they can give you some direction. What machine are you working on?


From: David
Meridian , MS
Comment: I have a 2005 Honda Foreman. My handle bar is loose and my atv is pulling to the right. Do I need to tighten my tire up. If so How do I do that?

Wow, Absolutely incredible. If the lugs on your wheel are tight then you may have a bearing problem in that wheel. The bars would feel loose if the wheel bearings in the wheel were bad. Take the wheel off the quad and try to wiggle the hub up or down to check for play in the bearings. If you find excessive slop then replace the bearings. Good Luck,


From: '03 BIG BEAR
Jonesboro , AR
Comment: I'm trying to pull the front hub off of my '03 Big Bear 4x4. Using a gear puller I threaded 2 bolts into the hub and jacked against the end of the spindle until I pulled one of the bolts out, threads and all. Is there something else holding it? It looks like it should just slide right off the splines. Thanks

Getting the hub off of this machine should be an easy task. Taking the wheel off then pulling the spindle should expose the hub. There are however several other things to remove before the hub will fly off. The next would be the upper and lower ball joints and the the steering linkage. This should free the hub up enough to be removed. Be carefull prying against things as youll have more trouble to fix before the first problem is solved.


From: kelly
Cincinnati , OH
Comment: i have a susuki 80 sport and i was jumping the battery and accidently touched the positive and negative leads together and it sparked. now quad wont do anything i tried starting wit new battery all it do is kick out the reset button.

It seems like you have burnt out the motor start relay fuse. Try replacing this fuse and get back on the trail.


From: chris
Layton , UT
Comment: I have an 85 or 86 yamaha moto4 2wd 4 wheeler that blows smoke, makes a light ticking noise and struggles with power going up hill but seems to be fine with power on more level terrain. It also has somewhat of a hard time starting up on a cold start but restarts fine after it's warmed up. The smoke is the worst at cold start but is still excessive when warmed up. My hunch is that it's likely burning oil but wanted to find out what you think. Chris

Man its time for an overhaul on the beast. It sounds like it needs new rings. Give it new life by getting the engine serviced man.


From: John
Subject: Traxter starter problem
Hi, I have a 2000 Bombardier Traxter I just bought a while ago that has been sitting over a year. I have gotten in running (pretty well actually) but the electric starter won't engage and i have to use the recoil starter to start it. Quite a tug, that bugger has some compression. But the starter motor spins. I opened it up and it looks clean, no burns, brushes good, commutator excellent. It just won't engage. I have the shop manual, but it is unclear as to how the engagement process works. can you help?

The starter on any motor need a good ground and plenty of power. Try looking into the positive lead that goes to the starter and also maybe take time and clean the contact surface on both the positive and negative terminals on the starter. That should help.


From: Iceman142
Exeter , PA
Comment: I have a question. does anyone make aftermarket shocks for Arctic Cat ATV's. I don't mean the %00 dollar racing shocks, but normal everyday replacement shocks that don't cost an arm and a leg? The dealer wants 70 bucks apiece and I thought maybe somebody made replacement items at a lower cost.

Bite the bullet my friend and get the stockers at $70 bucks. Most aftermarket brand shocks will cost you a small fortune and the dealers pricing will seem like pennies when compared!


From: S.Henderson
Subject: front drive shaft removal
I need to replace a front drive shaft coupler on a 98 400 foreman. Do I need to remove the front diff to do this? What is the general procedure?

I would say the front differential would need to be removed to access this coupler with ease. Getting specifics on how this final drive is removed would be better told in the service manual. This is where I would find my step by step procedures to insure the drive comes out easiest and goes back in without giving any trouble also.


From: 04atp500
Hazel park , MI
Comment: I have a 2004 polaris atp and the body is a little torn up so I was going to replace it with another atp body in the spring then i though about if I would be able to put a sportsman body on it because i only use it for off roading so i dont need the dump box on it would I be able to put a sportsman bod on a atp? I dont think the frame is different.

The frames of the ATP and Sportsman are different enough that a plastics swap wouldn’t be easy. I would just replace the stockers with new and leave it alone.


From: michelle
Subject: Troubleshooting Help
I have a Yamaha 660 Grizzly 4x4, the front left tire is not powered when in 4 wheel with differential locked (but jack it up, can not turn tire by hand in neutral) Any suggestions????

Sounds to me like your having some serious CV joint failure. Start with the CV closest to the wheel and look to see if there are any tears in the boot. Then do the same for the upper CV close to the drive/gearcase. If you have tears in the boots chances are trail debris has gotten in and caused the destruction of the CV joint.


From: bansheecrazy
Cincinnati , OH
Comment: I have 2000 banshee it idle great, but as soon as you give it gas it bogs out.There are no tors they have been removed,and brake plate installed.PLEASE HELP

I haven’t a clue what a “tors” is..Care to explain? If she’s boggin off the bottom you could have trash in the fuel. Also what the elevation you are riding at? Is the air filter clean?



Trashy fuel? Cheap gas? Plug fouled? Check these things and get back to us.


From: Chad
Spokane , WA
Comment: I have a 650 Honda Recon. Everytime I let off the gas the machine starts to shift matter how fast I'm going. Any suggestions of what the problem could be?

Its called engine braking. The machine is built to assist itself in braking by using the compression of the motor to slow the quad.


From: Anthony Pearce
Baxley , GA
Comment: What do i need to remove a snorkle kit off a kawasaki 360 prairie and what parts will i need to replace back to make it stock again?

More than likely you’ll need a new airbox for the Kawi. If this is a plastic piping then you can just cut it loose but be sure to not cut any factory boots it may be installed into. They are not hard to remove at all. Just be sure to patch up the holes and replace the airbox if it has been butchered up during the install of the snorkel.


From: downdirty
Eudora , AR
Comment: i need to know how to take apart my 4 wheeler and put rings on it can you please help me.

Replacing the rings in an engine requires moderate mechanical skills and shouldn’t be performed by a beginner. I don’t mean your not capable but it involves things that could cost you big time if you mess up. Get a service manual from your dealer and that will give you the tools and procedures to do it. It also helps to know what quad your working on.


From: Fmc26
Pawcatuck , CT
Comment: I have a Honda Rancher 4x4 that is always in 4 wheel drive. Is there anything that you can buy to make the machine go into 2 wheel drive or do i need to buy another machine? It stinks in the snow when you are always in 4 wheel drive!!!

There is always the removal of the front differential but if you go that far you might as well get a new machine.


From: terry
Leesville , SC
Comment: I have a 2000 e-ton yukon 150 it will start and idle good but if you touch the throttle it cuts off instantly. what could be the problem?

There could be a few different issues with this atv. Be sure the carb is getting enough fuel. Also make sure the airfilter isn’t clogged preventing enough air for the fuel. That’s where I’d start. Let us know how it turns out.


From: greenmachine
Burbank , CA
Comment: I have a 1987 honda 250r that starts and runs but doesnt have power any lower or higher than half throttle it has a .30 over motor carbon reeds and an fmf pipe PLEASE HELP... and do the reed valves have to be in a certain direction?

Sounds like it may need reeds if the rings are good. The reeds do have to be in correctly for them to work properly as well. Check the compression and be sure the reeds are screwed down correctly.


From: centerfire7mm
Wichita , KS
Comment: have a 2006 honda rincon 680 where is the oil filter and oil drain plug located

The Oil filter is on the right side of the motor about where your foot rests in the floorboard. The oil plug is just below it on the bottom of the motor. Good Luck,

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